Harvard, Yale, and Princeton are presently enrolling 45 per cent of the socially prominent boys, according to the 1963 New York Social Register.
In an article entitled "The Colleges of America's Upper Class" in the Nov. 16 Saturday Review, Gene R. Hawes adds this statistic to the recent trend toward intellect-oriented admissions policies, and concludes that "money's close connection with power, education, and refinement has ceased."
Hawes says that the Big Three schools were the "gentlemen's quarters" from the end of the Civil War until the end of World War II. After that, a sudden influx of applications caused the three most prestigious colleges to make a choice between "professed commitment to develop intellect and a long rich association with the upper class." The three, "especially Harvard," decided to replace aristocracy with "meritocracy," writes Hawes.
The colleges' meritocracy has apparently made intelligence and intellectuality important qualifications for a listing on the Social Register, he adds.
Among the Big Three, Harvard is only second in the number of students on The List. Yale has 171, Harvard, 123, and Princeton, 76. Pennsylvania is next with 44, followed by Trinity, Middlebury, and Virginia. The other Ivy Schools rank low on the column with an average of eight students on the Register.
In numbers of "prominent" alumni, Yale is again way out in front, leading Harvard, Princeton, Williams, and Columbia.
Hawes admits to the limitation of using merely the New York index, since Yale is the favored school among New York society, and Harvard the favorite of the Boston and Philadelphia elite.
Radcliffe has only 32 students listed, compared to 48 for Smith and 37 for Vassar. Wellesley follows with 31 and Wheaton with 30.